A blog about Facebook marketing

Is advertising on Instagram worth it?

Friday, October 21, 2016 Ross Barrett

A strong visual voice is key when driving great business results on Instagram. Instagram is one of the world’s largest mobile ad platforms with a community of more than 500M. Compared to Facebook and Twitter advertising, Instagram often shows a higher engagement rate.

Instagram gives businesses the possibility to share stories in a high quality environment with a highly engaged audience. If you compare this to advertising on Facebook and Twitter, you’ll find the ads can sometimes be overlooked by the viewer.

Here’s a few examples of why you should consider running your ads on Instagram:


When you create your ads in Facebook and choose an objective the Instagram placement will automatically be selected, as long as the objective supports Instagram. This means that excluding ads placed on desktop, news feed, mobile news feed and right column for Facebook, the ads will be visible on Instagram.


When creating Instagram ads, your ads will be optimized depending on the objective you select. Let’s say you choose the objective Clicks to Website, you’ll tell Facebook to send people to your website. Your ad will then be optimized to get more clicks to your website. The ad will also be optimized to show on the placement (Facebook or Instagram) that will obtain the most clicks to your website, at the lowest cost.

No account on Instagram needed:

All you need in order to advertise on Instagram is a Facebook page, which means that you don’t have to sign up for an Instagram account. Your page will serve as the face of your advertisement on Instagram.

Are people using Facebook and Instagram in the same way?

Instagram is primarily used for sharing photos whereas photo sharing is only one of Facebook’s many features. This means the options available for advertising on Instagram is more limited, but it can still be extremely effective for increasing brand awareness and interacting with your audience.

What ad creatives are there on Instagram?

Instagram offers a selection of the ad types already available for Facebook advertising.

Photo ads:

With Photo ads you can tell your story through amazing imagery. Whether it’s displaying your brand in a different light or inspiring people to take action, they can provide a simple yet beautiful canvas.

Carousel ads:

Carousel ads are similar to photo ads with an extra layer of depth. You can swipe to reveal more images and add call to action buttons which divert people to your website.

Video ads:

Video ads offer the same visual immersion of photo ads with the power of sound and motion. You can also share videos up to a minute in duration in landscape format.

Should you mix Facebook and Instagram targeting?

We recommend running ads on both Instagram and Facebook as you can potentially reach a larger audience.

With this said, we would suggest creating two separate campaigns, one for Instagram and one for Facebook. This way you’ll be able to set individual utm tags so it’s easier to track in Google Analytics. For example utm_source=facebook and utm_source=Instagram.

Do you have the same target groups on both sites?

In short, the same targeting options available for the ads you create in Facebook. The options include location, demographics, interests, actions and much more. Keep in mind that you don’t need to use all of the targeting options available, but you are required to choose country, age and gender. The other options are great if you want to narrow your target audience.

You can also use custom and lookalike audiences for Instagram in the same way you do for your Facebook ads.

How can I track the success of my Instagram ads?

Tracking conversions for Instagram is the same as tracking them for Facebook. By creating a Facebook pixel and adding it to the pages of your website where your conversions happen, such as the checkout page, you’ll see who converts as a result of your Instagram adverts.

We would also suggest tagging your ads with utm tags, in that way you can keep track of your ads in Google Analytics as well as in Facebook. If you’re new to utm-tagging Funnel.io has some great “Best practises” which you may find useful.

So, are Instagram ads worth it?

We believe that advertising on Instagram is worth it when it’s done right. Providing you have a good understanding of advertising on Facebook and you already have ad accounts and pixels in place it doesn’t take much effort to get started.

One thing to remember is that quality of the media you are sharing is key. Make sure that your pictures and videos are interesting and that you're targeting an audience that will respond to your ads. The best way to find your audience is through research, along with trial and error.

Start creating your Instagram ads in Qwaya today!

Do you advertise in more channels than Facebook?

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